Coastal fleet-footers and a class Iron Dubai finish

Joseph Bulmer

Recent training weather has not always been that kind, but twelve hardy Torbay Triathlon runners headed from South to North coast for the Bideford Half Marathon, proving they could race into Spring with a clutch of Personal Best times:

Results from the Event
Lewis Cholerton MSen 01:25:50; Ben Gerrish MSen 01:16:29; Jason Hurford MSen 01:14:26; Andrew Longthorpe V45 01:32:04; Valerie McClean FV55 02:08:13; James Moffett V40 01:29:46; Jon Parkinson V50 01:21:10; Matt Porter MSen 01:31:29; Matthew Power V40 02:06:39; Lee Turner V45 01:16:03; Wendy Urban FV55 01:39:09; Bobby Singh V55 01:54:26

Over in East Devon, where the weather was kind, but the coast path retained its usual undulating brutality, Jo Loten ran the 34th Grizzly, a tough 20-miler, conquering the Seaton pebbles and finishing with her usual smiley face in 03:42:48, with Eileen Severn completing another Grizzly cub 9-miler, beating her previous time by a minute in 02:21:48. Running well into her seventies and still enjoying every mile, Eileen is an inspiration for all club runners.

The Grizzly is a multi-terrain race across the glorious East Devon coastline and countryside and the major event in the calendar of Axe Valley Runners.  Through organising the Grizzly, the club has been able to raise thousands of pounds for local, national and international charities with donations since 1988 of more £425k.  The event attracts runners from throughout the UK and across the world.

Enthusiasm for the coming triathlon season grew, as club members cheered on Holly-Mei Jones in the Dubai 70.3 half Ironman challenge, finishing in a blistering 05:09:59, whilst stoically coping with strong headwinds on the bike section of the race and smoking hot 35˚C temperatures.

Holly benefited from being able to train indoors over the winter thanks to Torbay Leisure centre, as part of their promising athletes programme, supporting the progression of local athletes competing at regional or national levels, and she finds time in her busy training schedule to coach others at the tri club, at their Thursday night pace training sessions. Not all of them are quite as fast as Holly…yet!

For more information on Torbay Triathlon Club, visit www.torbaytri.co.uk

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